The U.S. Military’s Fight over Social Networking


Categorie: Cyberspace, David Axe |



A fight could be brewing between the office of U.S. Defense Secretary Robert Gates and U.S. Strategic Command, over the military’s use of “social-networking” Websites such as Facebook, Twitter, Myspace and Youtube. Just a few weeks ago, Gates hired a new Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary of Defense for Public Affairs, tasked with bringing the Department of Defense “into the 21st-century of communication,” according to a spokesperson. Price Floyd’s (pictured) first act as the new social-media czar, was to launch an official Pentagon Twitter account, for instantly communication short text messages to subscribers.

But Floyd’s mission could run counter to recommendations last week by Strategic Command, which is broadly responsible for so-called “cyber-defense” — that is, defending military computer networks from hackers. According to Noah Shachtman at Danger Room, Strategic Command is quietly calling for a total ban on accessing social networking sites from military networks. “They make it way too easy for people with bad intentions to push malicious code to unsuspecting users,” a Stratcom source said of networking sites.

“What we can’t do is let security concerns trump doing business,” Floyd said on Wednesday. I spoke to Floyd to understand his vision for military social-networking.

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One Response to “ The U.S. Military’s Fight over Social Networking”

  1. James says:

    To counter the threat of malicious code, they need only install a free Linux operating system such as Ubuntu. They could have it set up alongside their original operating system with a dual boot setup.

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